The Instagram account of Roscosmos cosmonaut Nikolai Chub shows his passions: flying and hiking. Born in 1984 in the south of Russia, he holds several records for wingsuit flying in Europe and his native country.
Like many space travelers, Nikolai dreamed of space all his life. He became a cosmonaut when he was only 28 years old. Since then, this computer engineer and parachutist has completed winter, desert and mountain survival trainings.
He learned how to survive in the cold Russian winter for 48 hours as well as how to cope with the heat in the steppes of Baikonur, Kazakhstan. However, Nikolai has never explored a cave. “I expect it will be like exploring an alien world. Compared to Earth’s surface, caves offer a completely different ecosystem and environment to explore,” he explains.
Nikolai believes space exploration is closely related to humankind’s desire to discover new territories. “when I was offered to join CAVES, I just couldn’t say no. I hope it helps me work more efficiently on the International Space Station one day,” he adds.
In addition to flying and hiking, Nikolai also enjoys parachuting and motorcycling.
More about Nikolai in this biography in Russian.